You don’t have to spend a fortune to get decent LED light panels any more. Although they may not have some of the kudos or high-end features of some of the big-name brands, NanGuang has a range of LED panels that offer great no-frills performance at excellent value for money. They may lack wireless, DMX remote control or a full range of sizes, but for features like that you need to pay a lot more.
If you’ve got the desk space and computing power to run it, Philips’ BDM4037U monitor has a curved 40in screen that gives you the impression of being even bigger than its already sizeable dimensions suggest. Many people will have a TV roughly the same size as this monitor, so if you want to get an idea of what using the Philips BDM4037U is like, go and park yourself two feet in front of that and binge on a favourite series for a few hours.
Size does matter, when it comes to sensors at least. A larger sensor can lead to higher resolution or reduced noise at high ISO, or both. And there’s the lovely wafer-thin depth-of-field you can easily get with the right lens. With DSLR and mirrorless cameras popularising full-frame, 35mm-size sensors in recent years, now cinema camera manufacturers are jumping onto the bandwagon. If you want to future-proof your lens investments, or use full-frame cameras now without having to crop the image, then a full-frame cinema zoom makes sense.
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If there’s one filter everyone should have, it’s a circular polariser. Sometimes, for cutting out unwanted reflections from windows or shiny objects, it’s the only realistic solution. It can darken skies, too, especially when used at roughly 90° to the sun. All you have to do is rotate the filter around and watch as reflections disappear and colours become more saturated.
Sigma’s reputation for high-quality lenses continues to grow, thanks to the Art series. These photo lenses offer incredible but affordable quality, and lend their optical design to Sigma’s full-frame cinema lenses.
Very fast telephoto prime lenses are often the workhorse of sports and wildlife photographers. Fujifilm has now joined Canon, Nikon and Sony in offering lenses like this. Canon and Nikon only make fast tele primes for their DSLRs, but Sony and Fujifim do for their mirrorless cameras, too.